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What Is Framing Nailer

November 15, 2018Olen Murriel

A Framing nailer is an indispensable tool used on any site that a home building project is ongoing. It is often times referred to as nail gun or framing gun. The main purpose of a framing nailer is for driving of nails into surfaces. Framing nailers make nailing very fast and easy and with its help, one could nail a framing assembly faster than a professional carpenter with a hammer can. The ease and speed with which nails are driven into surfaces with the framing nailer help to increase the speed with which any nailing work will be done.

Just like every other equipment, when the framing nailer is used appropriately and for the purpose, it was made, it will help to increase productivity in woodwork, but if it is used inappropriately or it is manhandled, the framing nailer can pose a serious danger and inflict serious damage on the user. To avoid any hazard while using this tool, it is advisable that you stick the original purpose it is meant for and use according to the specifications of the manufacturer.

Types of Framing Nailers

Framing nailers come in two types namely

  1. Pneumatic framing nailer
  2. Cordless framing nailer

The pneumatic framing nailer has an air compressor with a hose attached through which air is supplied to it. The air that is compressed in the hose of the nailer triggers a piston, that puts pressure on the nail thereby driving it into the wooden surface where the nail should be. The main source of force for this type of nailer is the compressed air in the air compressor.

On the other hand, the cordless framing nailer makes use of the force from a disposable compressed air canister, the pressure from this canister drives the piston which in turn drives the nail into the wild. The disposable air canister of this nailer can fit inside the nailer. This type of nailer also has a battery which helps to activate the charge and provided the nailer the force requires to drive nails into wood. Once the air in the canister has been used up, it can be removed and replaced with a new canister.

These two types of framing nailer have their pros and cons. The pneumatic framing nailer is the fastest of the two but the hose that passes air from the air compressor can get in the way while working and this can be a bit inconvenience. The tank of the framing nailer also had to have a large capacity in order to supply the nailer with the appropriate pressure needed.

The cordless framing nailer, on the other hand, needs to be run for a while before it can generate enough pressure to work and the fact that the air compressor canister is detachable means that you would have to constantly spend on buying a new canister. This type, however, can be used with ease without any hose getting in the way.

These differences were just mentioned for the sake of extra comfort, both types of mailers are efficient and will help to ease the difficulty associated with nailing.


Framing nailers work hand in hand with a nail, it is there for important to state that the type of nail that should be used with a particular kind of framing nailer must be considered.

Framing nailers work in different ways, while some may have a long magazine that can hold up to a hundred stick nails at a time, another type may have round magazines which make use of a coil of nails. This, however, is based on the preference of the user.

It is however very important to note that the type of nail used can’t be left to just preference. The type of nail used is dependent on the way the nailer is made. Some nailers are designed to use only clipped head nails, these kinds of nails are shaped like a crescent moon. Other types of nailers are boy compatible with clipped nails. It is therefore advisable that you check and know which type of nail is suitable for your nailer before you use.

How to Use a Framing Nailer

All framing nailers have a large cylinder above the tip of the nailer. It is from the tip that nails are driven into wood. Before pressing the trigger, the tip of the nailer must be pressed against the surface of the wood to avoid any form of hazard. Before firing the nailer, ensure that the nail tip and the cylinder are properly aligned to the direction that the nail is being driven into.

The nail tip should be depressed by pressing the nailer into the wood before the trigger of pulled. The depth that the mail will go into the wood is already set on the nailer and if it is not appropriate, it can be adjusted to suit your preference. The nailer will fire one nail at a time into the wood.

Framing Nailers Triggers

Generally, framing nailers have two types of triggers that are interchangeable namely: The bump fire trigger and the standard single fire trigger.

The single firing trigger works by pressing the tip of the nail against the world and pulling the trigger each time you want to fore a nail. This type of trigger is more precise and controlled and it is the recommended type of trigger to use for beginners.

When using the bump fire trigger, the trigger is pulled and then the tip of the nail is bumpers into the wood for the nail to be fired. You do not need to repeatedly press the trigger for each nail to be driven into the wood. This type of trigger is very fast, but it is advisable to be used by professionals and also for use after the nailer has been properly mastered.

Fastening Methods

When using a framing nailer, two styles of nailing are achieved. The through nailing and the toe nailing. The toe nailing is the simplest and common nailing method using a framing mailed. In this method, one mail square is driven to the face of a board and then into another board.

The toe nailing method involves driving the nail into the wood at an angle. To achieve this the nailer is to be positioned at the desired angle, the nail tip must be pressed against the surface before the nail is fired. A little practice is needed for the nail to be driven in perfectly with it splitting the wood and also to prevent the tip of the nail from coming out at the back of the wood.

Safety Measures

Just like every other power tool or equipment, ensure that you are putting on the appropriate safety wear before using the framing nailer. The safety wears that should be in place are hearing protections to shield the ear from the loud noise of the nailer, safety glasses to prevent pieces of wood from flying into your eyes and the appropriate set of clothing.

On no account should you tamper with the safety features on the framing nailer, they do not hamper productivity, rather they are there to ensure safety. Take, for example, the nail tip of the nailer is there to prevent hazards if the nail tip is not there the framing nailer becomes like a handgun and if a nail is mistakenly fired without the nailer, it can do serious damage to the body just as a bullet would. To avoid exposing yourself to any severe danger, do not tamper with the nail time.

In addition, some people have the habit of pulling back the nail tip with one hand and firing with the other hand. This is actually a very dangerous act, because the framing nailer may misfire and cause serious damage to the hand of the user. If you value your hands, do not tamper with the nail tip.

Just in case the nail head gets jammed, there is a safe way of rectifying the problem. The head of framing nailers Can be quickly and easily removed and the jammed nail can be easily removed.

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